The uncertain future of liberal democracy

Yascha Mounk's new research shows that growing numbers of people in democratic countries — especially younger people — don't consider it all that important whether they live in a democracy or not.
Yascha Mounk, a Lecturer on Political Theory at Harvard University, has quickly become one of the most influential experts on democracy in the western world. (Supplied/Harvard University Press)
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In January, the Economist magazine found that the health of democracy was declining in more than half the countries it studied in its annual Democracy Index.

And many — sometimes a majority — of the voters in these countries seem perfectly content, even eager, to return anti-democratic governments to office.

The future of liberal democracy hasn't looked so uncertain since the darkest days of the Second World War. 

Yascha Mounk, a Lecturer on Political Theory at Harvard University, has quickly become one of the most influential experts on democracy in the western world. His research should give pause to anyone who cares about the future of liberal democracy.

He has found that growing numbers of people in democratic countries — especially younger people — don't consider it all that important whether they live in a democracy or not. And people born after 1980 are increasingly open to being ruled by strongman autocrats or military juntas.

Yascha Mounk's writing has appeared in the New York Times, the Atlantic and Foreign Affairs, among other places. And his new book is The People Vs. Democracy: Why Our Freedom is in Danger and How to Save It.

Click 'listen' above to hear the interview.

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